Squeaky HF Gets The Greasy Industry Rap
Given the publicity that activist hedge funds get, for better or worse, one would think the industry is laden with them. Wrong, according to a survey by Thomson Financial.
Given the publicity that activist hedge funds get, for better or worse, one would think the industry is laden with them. Wrong, according to a survey by Thomson Financial, which found that more than two-thirds of hedgies say they are not activist at all. Of those claiming the mantle, according to Thomson, 15% say their activism means making suggestions to management, and the rest they say are only occasional activist. The poll of 50 hedge fund managers seems to be at odds with the general impression formed mainly by the activities of a few loud ones, such as The Children’s Investment Fund, with its famous (or infamous) attempt to oust management at Deutsche Börse, and other HF noisemakers such as Polygon Investment Partners, Centaurus Capital and Paulson & Co. As one HF whom Thomson interviewed put it, “If we’re not happy with the company, we sell it,” while another noted, “Generally, we will vote with management on all issues.” Thomson’s findings appear in sync with a survey in the U.S. by National Investor Relations Institute that found only 25%of investor relations officers had been contacts in the past year by what would be termed activist hedge funds.